Remember This Name, “Magic Leap”

Everyone thinks Florida is a place where people go to retire. That image is about to change forever. A company named Magic Leap, located in Plantation, FL, just announced that its new mixed reality headset is ready for public consumption. The company promises that they have reinvented the way people will interact with computers and reality.

Magic Leap says it will take augmented reality to a whole new level. Wikipedia explains augmented reality as a “live direct or indirect view of a physical, real-world environment whose elements are ‘augmented’ by computer-generated real-world sensory input such as sound, video, and graphics.” Watch the above video or click on the link below to see augmented reality in action.

Magic Leap gained notoriety in the tech industry because it managed to raise over $1.9 billion from investors such as Google and Alibaba. This was particular remarkable considering very few people in the industry ever saw the product as it was being developed.

Magic Leap’s augmented reality headset has been kept a secret for at least two years. Industry folks began to think the whole thing was a hoax but not any longer. Rony Abovitz is the CEO and creator of the AR company. The headset device is referred to as Lightwear and is attached to a pocket-sized computer called the Lightpack. Together, they inject life-like moving people, robots, spaceships into a person’s view of the real world

Southern Florida will never be the same. With a little effort, it will become the next Silicon Valley.

Here’s another chance to see Magic Leap in action.

Christmas Tree With Companion App

If you don’t have a lot of time this holiday to decorate, this is an easy solution. Approximately $99.95.

Features

• Festive 105-light set that you can control with your smartphone • Allows you to play many colourful and animated effects • Can be extended with the Twinkly add-on set (available separately) • Suitable for indoor or outdoor use • Energy efficient long LED lifespan

If you want to get into the holiday spirit without the traditional tree, this is what is being featured on Instagram–your very own festive pineapple.

Once again, my girlfriend Barbara O’Connell, gave me some old photos to share.

The First Waffle House Circa 1900

Rural Mail Delivery Circa 1914

Pumping Gas, Circa 1925

The first ambulance: Bellevue Hospital Center, NY, 1869

4th Of July Parade, Front Street, Nome, Alaska

Old General Store, Circa 1917

This Scale Doesn’t Tell You How Much You Weigh

One of the reasons why I don’t lose weight is because I constantly weigh myself. Some people weigh themselves once a week, I weigh myself a few times in a 24-hour period. If I lose a pound during the day, I eat more at dinner thinking I can afford the extra calories.

I know it makes no sense. I am probably better off not knowing my weight and worrying so much about it. At least I wouldn’t be eating all the time. A few days ago, I heard about a scale that doesn’t tell you how much you weigh. The scale, called Shapa, records your weight but doesn’t give you the number.

The philosophy behind no numbers is that this type of scale encourages you to lose weight. Instead of numbers, you get a color. Blue and green mean you’re losing weight, gray means you need to cut back your food intake.

Shapa works with an app. Every time you step on the scale, the app records your weight. The app also tells you when to step on the scale, and gives you goals. The artificial intelligence (AI) gives you smart tips, “Eat something green with every meal,” or “Eat dinner earlier.” AI customizes everything for you once the scale gets to know you better.

Let’s hope this scale works.

Shapa is about $100, with an $8.00 subscription plan.

I Never Take Dead People Off My Email List

Sorry, I refuse to take anyone who passed on off my email list. I just have to keep them on. If they stay on, then I feel they are not really gone. I also feel my email list keeps them important. Taking them off would be a betrayal. It’s one of the few places in the world where they will constantly be remembered.

Some of the deceased have been on my list for 20 plus years. Unfortunately, a few recently got added. This is the time of year where I see their names a lot because I am emailing Chanukah and Christmas cards. I have to be very careful not to send them a card. I worry each year that I accidentally did. I cringe that someone in their family will receive my card and think I am nuts. Anything is possible.

It takes me better than 10 hours to email out all the names I have marked. The beauty of email is that I can pick thousands of names. I usually do. It’s the time of year that I want to reach to everyone I ever had a conversation with. This year we came up with a unique card. It’s Eliot’s creation. The reviews so far have been positively wonderful.

We loved so many of the holiday cards that we decided to send them all. Wishing you good health, peace and happiness

Photo by Eliot Hess

Headline Stress Disorder

Before we get started on today’s topic, I wanted to show PBS fans what a Viking ocean cruise liner looks like. Viking is a major sponsor of Masterpiece on PBS. Many of us have either seen Viking’s river cruise boats in their TV or print ads, or have taken a trip on one. Now I get to show you one of their bigger ships as it passed underneath my Miami condo window last night. I quickly grabbed my smartphone, and took a video for your viewing pleasure. Enjoy!

I couldn’t stop staring at a headline from NBC News the other day. It said, “What is headline stress disorder and do you have it?” I couldn’t believe those words. I was who that headline was talking about. I am obsessed with the news. I keep checking my iPhone several times an hour looking for the next astonishing situation that is happening in the United States.

It could be #metoo, North Korea, fires, Russia, fake news, Net Neutrality, Roy Moore, or ISIS. Should I go on? Nah, you get my drift. There is so much to keep up with. Most of my friends are addicted too, checking their smartphones around the clock for news alerts. The digital world has trained us to expect new news all the time.

NBC said a recent study by the American Psychological Association found that “two-thirds of Americans are stressed out over the future of the country, and the constant consumption of news cycle was pinned as a major contributor.” Therapists are now calling our new condition, “headline stress disorder. ”

NBC is worried that many of us are getting more and more out-of-control. The TV network claims we are creating a very upsetting environment for ourselves. Therefore, they have asked the therapists to help cure us.

This is their cure. I am willing to try a few, but not all. For deeper explanations, click here.

1. SET FIRM TIME LIMITS — AND USE AN ACTUAL TIMER

2. WAIT A WHILE TO CONSUME NEWS AFTER A DISASTER

3. MAKE AN EFFORT TO GET GOOD NEWS, TOO

4. PICK UP A PAPER, NOT FACEBOOK — YOU’LL GET A BETTER BALANCE

5. YOU DON’T HAVE TO TALK ABOUT IT IF YOU DON’T WANT TO

6. NO NEWS BEFORE BED

7. START THE DAY WITH AN UPLIFTING PODCAST

8. IF YOU NEED TO, DELETE SOCIAL MEDIA APPS FROM YOUR PHONE

9. CUT OFF COMPLETELY (BUT HAVE A FRIEND TO INFORM YOU)

10. HAVE SOME PERSPECTIVE AND DON’T ‘CATASTROPHIZE’

If you are an obsessed news junkies like me, make sure you read the entire NBC story.

Uber Vs. Ambulance

Image: NBC

It was bound to happen. People prefer to take Uber to the hospital, rather than an ambulance. A recent study by the University of Kansas and Scripps Mercy Hospital in San Diego found that ambulance usage in 766 cities around the United States is declining. The study claims there can only be one reason for that, Uber.

It makes total sense to me. If I needed to get to the hospital, I would immediately call Uber or Lyft. I am not talking about being unconscious or bleeding to death. If I wasn’t feeling well, I would rather call a ride sharing service where I could monitor the pickup time, as opposed to an ambulance that may not be in the vicinity. I want to get to the hospital in the most expeditious way.

The big bonus, in opting for the likes of an Uber or Lyft, is that you can choose exactly when you want to go to the hospital, and which hospital you want to go to. If you call an ambulance, you are at the mercy of the paramedics.

Again, this all makes perfect sense to me. However, we have to remember that Ubers and Lyfts do not come with medical professionals. That could be a matter of life and death.

Mashable covered this story as well.

Tech Onboard

The Carnival Vista arriving in the Port of Miami today in the early morning hours.

One of the many advantages of living in Miami is that you hear a lot about the cruise industry. You always meet someone who works for one of the cruise lines, or the “Miami Herald” has a news story about some development.

The other day there was a story in the Herald about the technological advancements in cruising. I wanted to write about it because so many DigiDame readers cruise all over the world. The changes that will be incorporated over the next five years will be astonishing.

One big attraction for guests is that new “smart” technology will help eliminate long lines and waiting time. This will be accomplished by facial recognition and geo-location. Carnival Corporation, Royal Caribbean Cruises, Norwegian Cruise Line Holdings and MSC Cruises are leading the way.

Other advances are using your smart phones for hotel keys, wearable, customized mini discs that will track your whereabouts for personalized service, interactive screens in staterooms, and RFID tags on luggage to track delivery times to cabins.

For more good news read the Miami Herald.

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Great Truths

1. In my many years I have come to a conclusion that one useless man is a shame, two is a law firm, and three or more is a congress.

John Adams

2. If you don’t read the newspaper you are uninformed. If you do read the newspaper you are misinformed.

Mark Twain

3. Suppose you were an idiot. And suppose you were a member of Congress. But then I repeat myself…

Mark Twain

4. I contend that for a nation to try to tax itself into prosperity is like a man standing in a bucket and trying to lift himself up by the handle.

Winston Churchill

5. A government which robs Peter to pay Paul can always depend on the support of Paul.

GeorgeBernard Shaw

6. A liberal is someone who feels a great debt to his fellow man, which debt he proposes to pay off with your money.

G. GordonLiddy

7. Giving money and power to government is like giving whiskey and car keys to teenage boys.

P.J. O’Rourke, Civil Libertarian

8. Government’s view of the economy could be summed up in a few short phrases: If it moves, tax it. If it keeps moving, regulate it. And if it stops moving, subsidize it.

Ronald Reagan (1986)

9. I don’t make jokes. I just watch the government and report the facts.

Will Rogers

10. If you think health care is expensive now, wait until you see what it costs when it’s free!

P. J. O’Rourke

11. No man’s life, liberty, or property is safe while the legislature is in session.

Mark Twain (1866)

12. Talk is cheap, except when Congress does it.

Anonymous

13. The inherent vice of capitalism is the unequal sharing of the blessings. The inherent blessing of socialism is the equal sharing of misery.

Winston Churchill

14. The only difference between a tax man and a taxidermist is that the taxidermist leaves the skin.

Mark Twain

15. There is no distinctly Native American Criminal Class, save Congress.

Mark Twain

16. What this country needs are more unemployed politicians

Edward Langley, Artist (1928-1995)

17. A government big enough to give you everything you want, is strong enough to take everything you have.

Thomas Jefferson

Thank you Barbara O’Connell for these quotes. They make a great blog post. We were out late and I want to go to sleep. Good night.

I’m In Good Company, Age-Wise

When I saw these slides on Facebook, I knew I had to share them with you. Thank you, the Today Show, for recognizing these great, senior women.

A good friend, Gary Arlen, a Washington DC tech writer, took the time to add information about Net Neutrality. Thank you Gary. you are always the educator.

Your Access To The Internet Is Being Threatened

Thank you Alabama, thank you, thank you, thank you !!!!!

Now for the next issue…….

I’m not sure if you totally understand, but this Thursday the FCC may decide to repeal the Obama net neutrality protection.

What does that mean?

It means that the Internet could get very difficult for you to use.

I am rather shocked that many of us have not spoken about this before. The Trump Administration doesn’t want the Internet to be equal for all of us. Net neutrality means that all content on the Internet is the same for everyone. The current administration may want to play favorites.

Obama made sure that Internet Service Providers (ISPs) couldn’t block or slow down content for any of us. Now all kinds of manipulations may take place.

Please google net neutrality to get more information about this situation. Give us your opinion.

Thank you

You can write to your Senator or State Rep.

Or